The exact meaning of these features is not clear, but if it be remembered (a) that the Levites of post-exilic literature represent only the result of a long and intricate development, (b) that the name "Levite," in the later stages at least, was extended to include all priestly servants, and (c) that the priesthoods, in tending to become hereditary, included priests who were Levites by adoption and not by descent, it will be recognized that the examination of the evidence for the earlier stages cannot confine itself to those narratives where the specific term alone occurs.
Post-exilic revision has also hopelessly obscured the offence of Moses and Aaron, although there was already a tendency to place the blame upon the people (Deut.
3 But the history of the Levites in the early post-exilic stage and onwards is a separate problem, and the work of criticism has not advanced sufficiently for a proper estimate of the various vicissitudes.
The key must be sought in the exilic and post-exilic age where, unfortunately, direct and decisive evidence is lacking.
For the history of the Levites in the post-exilic and later ages, see the commentaries on Numbers (by G.
But this certainly was not the leading point of view with the mass of the Rabbins; 1 and at any rate it is quite certain that the synagogue is a post-exilic institution, and therefore that the Sabbath in old Israel must have been entirely different from the Sabbath of the Scribes.
13), and the character of a sign between Yahweh and Israel ascribed to it in the post-exilic law.
- The Jews under the second temple observed every seventh year as a Sabbath according to the (post-exilic) law of Lev.
In the exile, but probably after 50o B.C., an important section of the Hexateuch, usually called the Priest's Code (P), was drawn up. At various times in the same century are to be placed the book of Job, the post-exilic parts of Isaiah, the books of Joel, Jonah, Malachi and the Song of Songs.
The view of Professor Dillmann, who placed P before D in the regal period (though he admitted exilic and postexilic additions in Exod., Levit.
Strongly to be recommended are Smend, Lehrbuch der alttestamentlichen Religionsgeschichte; Bennett, Theology of the Old Testament and Religion of the Post-Exilic Prophets; A.
Finally (c), in the so-called " post-exilic " period, religion and life were reorganized under the influence of a new spirit; relations with Samaria were broken off, and Judaism took its definite character, perhaps about the middle or close of the 5th century.
Some appear written for the first time in the book of Jubilees, in " the Testament of the Twelve Patriarchs " (both perhaps 2nd century B.C.) and in later sources; and although in Genesis the stories are now in a post-exilic setting (a stage earlier than Jubilees), the older portions may well belong to the 7th or 6th cent.
Although it is difficult to determine the true historical kernel, two features are most prominent in the narratives which the post-exilic compiler has incorporated: the revelation of Yahweh, and the movement into Palestine.
The prominence of Jerusalem, the centre of post-exilic Judaism, necessarily invited reflection.
Collections of laws are found in Deuteronomy and in exilic and post-exilic writings; groups of a relatively earlier type are preserved in Exod.
(now in post-exilic form).
His main object is to make the new Israel, the post-exilic community at Jerusalem, continuous, as a society, with the old Israel.'
No doubt there is much that is purely artificial and untrustworthy in the late (post-exilic) representations of these divisions, but it is almost incredible that the historical foundation for their early career is severed from the written sources by centuries of warfare, immigration and other disturbing factors.
Browning, " Development."] It is noteworthy that Josephus, who has his own representation of the post-exilic age, allows two years and four months for the work (Ant.
4 There are three inquiries: (a) the critical value of i Esdras, (b) the character of the different representations of post-exilic internal and external history, and (c) the recovery of the historical facts.
The post-exilic priestly spirit represents a tendency which is absent from the Judaean Deuteronomic book of Kings but is fully mature in the later, and to some extent parallel, book of Chronicles (q.v.).
Upon the characteristics of the post-exilic priestly writings we need not dwell.'
Maintaining that the position of the Pentateuch alone explains the books which follow, conservative writers concede that it is composite, has had some literary history, and has suffered some revision in the post-exilic age.
This is especially true of the history of the exilic and post-exilic periods, where the effort is made to preserve the continuity of Israel and the Israelite community (Chronicles - Ezra - Nehemiah).
Although these and other phenomena cannot yet be safely placed in a historical frame, the methodical labours of past scholars have shed much light upon the obscurities of the exilic and post-exilic ages, and one must await the more comprehensive study of the two or three centuries which are of the first importance for biblical history and theology.
And although the Levitical organization, as ascribed to David, is manifestly post-exilic, it is at least certain that many of the Levitical families were of southern origin.
The Biblical narratives reveal traces of a considerable development in the traditions regarding this sacred object, and those which furnish the most complete detail are of post-exilic date when the original ark had been lost.
5-19); (c) A psalm of post-exilic origin, whose fragments, i.
14), but at what period of its post-exilic history we have no means of inferring.
It must be admitted that the gorgeousness of ritual described by the Chronicler is far more in harmony with the days of Simon than with any previous post-exilic period.
They are post-exilic in their whole tone and belong to a time when prophecy had ceased and the synagogue worship was fully established (lxxiv.
Robertson Smith, are opposed to the dating of any psalms of the second collection in the Maccabaean period, that, since they are post-exilic, there is one and only one time in the Persian period to which they can be referred, viz.
Although there is no psalm which can be shown with any probability to be pre-exilic, it is not impossible that there are some which date from as early a time as the age of Zerubbabel, by whose appointment national hopes were raised to so high a pitch.
I is (like those of the Psalms) the work of one or more of the Sopherim (or students and editors of Scripture) in post-exilic times, apparently the same writer (or company of writers) who prefixed the headings of Hosea and Micah, and perhaps of some of the other books.
The idea is not in itself inadmissible, at least for post-exilic portions, for Zoroastrian ideas were in the intellectual atmosphere of Jewish writers in the Persian age.
6r) - they were no doubt familiar in Palestine in the post-exilic age, and in the Roman period the braccae and feminalia were certainly known.
The embodiment of political and religious supremacy displayed in the high priest's authority, clothing and symbols can only reflect exilic or rather post-exilic conditions.'
The judgments predicted by the pre-exilic prophets had indeed been executed to the letter, but where were the promised glories of the renewed kingdom and Israel's unquestioned sovereignty over the nations of the earth ?
Gesch., 3rd ed., p. 160) rejects the earlier foundation; on the other hand, he insists, with the majority of scholars and against Kosters, on the actual return of exiles in 537 to form the nucleus of the post-exilic community (loc. cit., p. 157 n.).
Also were pre-exilic was held to appear especially in the attack on idolatry and lying prophecy (xiii.
According to the late post-exilic genealogies he was of Levitical origin (1 Chron.
The reasons urged against the contention that the priestly legislation and the Elohistic narratives were separated by a space of 500 years were so strong as to induce Graf, in an essay, "Die sogenannte Grundschrift des Pentateuchs," published shortly before his death, to regard the whole Grundschrift as post-exilic and as the latest portion of the Pentateuch.
The prophecy affords an interesting and valuable glimpse of the post-exilic community, with its various currents of thought and life.
(The dates are due to the post-exilic framework in which the stories are inserted.) Still another episode of the same nature is recorded of Isaac and Rebekah at Gerar, also with Abimelech.
Thus other hands apart from the compiler of Chronicles may have helped to shape the narratives, either before their union with that book or after their separation.2 The present intricacy is also due partly to specific historical theories regarding the post-exilic period.
Some recent critics,' however, are inclined to place them in the post-exilic period, in which case a late editor has substituted them for earlier, probably less edifying, oracles.
Have Gog, which would imply a post-exilic date, cf.
The penitent and God-fearing Jews of the post-exilic age needed some softening appendix, and this the editor provided.
Thus the pre-exilic literature, as we now have it, has little to say about angels or about superhuman beings other than Yahweh and manifestations of Yahweh; the pre-exilic prophets hardly mention angels.